Is Billy Gilmour part of Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea plans?
Frank Lampard’s sacking and Thomas Tuchel’s arrival has brought a sea of change for Chelsea, and one fear amongst supporters is the impact the managerial change will have on its youth, and in particular Billy Gilmour.
The Scottish midfielder was signed for £500,000 from Rangers when he was just 15 years old and to date has made 17 appearances for the first-team, with nine of them starts.
Lampard had slowly integrated him into the fold, but Tuchel omitted him from his first matchday squad in charge, and left doubts over whether Gilmour will get a chance.
During his first press conference as Chelsea manager, Tuchel told the official club website: “For Billy, I have a good impression. He is a very strategic guy, very high level of game understanding, good in the first contact, clever positioning.
“We will see if he has the physical level. But he is super quick with his feet.”
Standing at just 5″7, and weighing just 65kg, it’s no surprise Tuchel pointed out Gilmour’s lack of physicality, something the German believes he’ll need to improve on if he wants to become a Premier League regular.
Talk of a loan move away this January surfaced even before Tuchel’s arrival and before his sacking Lampard said a loan deal for Gilmour wasn’t off the table.
With Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante, and Mason Mount his rivals for a midfield slot, as well as the more advanced Kai Havertz, Gilmour faces stiff competition for places, and at just 19, gametime is crucial to his development.
All four of the aforementioned players have played at least 20 times more minutes in the league than Gilmour this season, and whilst he’s spent a large proportion of the campiagn recovering from injury, it doesn’t bode well for his immediate future.
Chelsea see Gilmour as their future, that’s why they paid so much to sign him, but if he can’t get into Tuchel’s squad against Burnley on Sunday, then a loan move away could be the answer.